Some of the exhibits strongly reminded me of two books by Louisa May Alcott: Eight Cousins (1875) and its sequel, Rose in Bloom (1876). Published in the decade following the great success of Little Women, Alcott used the novels to outline her political and educational philosophy, based on that of her father, Trancendentialist philosopher Amos Bronson Alcott.
On Uncle Alec's arrival, Rose is presented with many mementos of his travels, decorating her room in a way that would have delighted Aesthetic taste: bamboo furniture, a Japanese screen, a painting of the Madonna and a blue and white jug and bowl. Japanese porcelein and paintings had been arriving in the West since the 1860s, after the end of the Kaei era of seclusion of Japan; French artists were particularly influenced by Japanese woodblock printing, and Little Women paid for May Alcott, Louisa's artist sister, to visit Paris. Later in the story Rose goes to the harbour and meets Chinese merchant Mr Whang Lo and his nephew, Fun See, and is presented with a fan, packets of tea and a tea service. In Rose in Bloom, Fun See marries one of Rose's closest friends.
Uncle Alec advocates dress reform; Rose is dressed in "pyjamas" or pantaloons with a dress over the top; described as being to the top of her boots, Rose's dress is longer than the one pictured: